Random Friday


So, after drawing Rithvik and Kerrien, I decided to get back to comics. Maybe a new strip, maybe a webcomic. Not sure yet about formats, but definitely for online consumption first.

Researching the topic I see some webcomics are single-panel cartoons, others are three- or four-panels comic strips that ave the same structure as newspaper format. I probably won’t use the “infinite canvas” and will do a mix of single vignettes and strips.

I hate the infinite canvas… I won’t be reading Ren Rou’s next comic When We Fall because it’s an infinite canvas – she says it’s comes out better on phones… pity I don’t read on a phone because guess what? I’m old, and I  can’t see the damn screen very well! I loved her previous comic Stolen and saved the page to print them out and read it offline, but I’ll have to pass on this one.

For comics I’m still very traditional. Yes, I might follow Facebook pages of cartoonist, but I’d rather go to comicons and buy the books, possibly with a little sketch on them! But I understand the need to evolve, so I will give this webcomic thingy a try. Althought there’s the problem of finding a format that can be future-proof.

Da Strip was like the Peanuts, four identical squares that could be put on a square or vertical or horizontal, so that might be a good format for this project too. I still have the four-panels squares that I used for Da Strip, so I may start with that.

In the meantime, here’s some sketches I did while toying with the characters. I have no problems at drawing human-like chibis, but the little dragon was a challenge… so here you have some studies, a sort of cover art and a first sequence… in WiP format. It will need clean-up and colors before going online, but I thought I’d give a sneak peek.

And since #8Sunday was so successful, I’ll keep going with Beautiful – and since I have the drawings, I’ll post the 8-10 sentences referring to that particular vignette… have a wonderful weekend! 🙂 By the way, tomorrow Himalayas goes live… book 4 of the Future Earth Chronicles is here! 😀

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Writer Wednesday


Last week I wrote again under 10K (but above 9K) because I had to go through not one but two manuscripts, one back from the proofreader and the other for it’s final pass before going to the proofreader. I still managed to write another short story that I plan to submit and then eventually publish later this year.

Now I’m trying to write another story, maybe two, so I can send them to the proofreader next week. I’m also pondering my Patreon options while I wait for Findaway Voices to find me narrators (I requested a male voice but still have to choose the female voice).

I also finished the drawings for the illustrated version of Beautiful, now I only need to put them in the text and upload the PDF to KDPprint… And since the latest story is also based on an old comic of mine, I’m itching to do a new graphic project, but I’m afraid I’ll never have time. It took me months to do about 80 vignettes for Beautiful, imagine a full comic book!

So, nyeah, not really. Sigh. I’m also way behind with translations back into Italian, so I’ll just give up the idea – although I’m going to Cartoomics cause I’ve got artbooks and comics to buy, LOL! And illustrators to meet. I might have to order another custom cover this year, although I’m doing quite well with stock rendering – again, I’d love to learn how to use DAZ Studio so I wouldn’t have to search DepositPhoto, but who has the time?

Maybe when I get a few months off Day Job I can find an online course and learn it. But for now, I better concentrate on writing, translating and publishing!

I had to reset my smartphone, and besides losing the MP3 player and having to find another email app, I “discovered” the Google docs on android. So even though I still have a paper Moleskine for notes, I discovered I can also write on that small screen and it will save on Google Drive and then I can moved it to Dropbox if necessary.

Now, my phone screen is often too small for me, but I kind of felt hyper-technologic for a moment, there! 😀 I’ll probably stick to at least this Moleskine, gifted to me by friends at the beginning of the new Millennium (one year I got two, one is full, the other almost) and then we’ll see. I know I have an alternative!

One Kobo sale is gone, but the other is still on until tonight… so if you have a Kobo eReader and want to try Future Earth Chronicles really cheaply, get it now! 🙂 And if you already have Brainwaves, Wanderlust is already out and Across Continents goes live on Saturday. Himalayas already has a document if you want a sneak peek and as soon as the proofreader sends back Airships, I’ll upload that one too.

And I’ll try to ignore all the KDP emails asking me to make sure that the manuscript is the final one – doh! I don’t upload to KDP until I have the final one, it’s not as if they allow assetless preorders like Smashwords… 😉

I guess that’s all for now… have a great week! 🙂

 

Random Friday


So, I managed to watch a couple of DVDs of competing universes! My reader’s loyalty goes mostly to Marvel, since I used to read Fantastic Four and Spiderman in the 1980s, and for that reason I don’t watch the movies based on those comics (okay, I did see the first Spiderman movie but hated it, so now you know why).

My movie-watcher loyalty is probably evenly split. I did see the first Superman (and the 3rd) in theaters back in the 1980s and possibly a couple of Batman (I think the George Clooney one because I had friends who liked him and the first Christian Bale because hey, Iceland!), but the rest was on DVD.

So, after most X-men movies, I got Deadpool out of curiosity… and yeah, it’s not politically correct, he talks to the audience, he’s an asshole, but… meh. I totally hated the fake Colossus (as much as I hated the fake Spiderman moving around) and I’m not sure I even liked the storyline. Yes, it changes us from the usual politically correct straight heroes, but… dunno.

On the other side of the fence, I mean, the other universe, I watched Suicide Squad. Villains turned heroes. That was actually a cool idea! Yeah, they’re batshit crazy, but they did save the world! And Will Smith in a bad-guy-turned-hero version was almost unrecognizable at first. And I did see Hancock.

So I probably won’t get Deadpool 2 (unless it’s in the discount bin), but I might enjoy a Suicide Squad 2, if there’s such a thing. As for the comics… I’m trying to empty my bookshelves and I read comics only on paper, so… I’ll just skip that! 🙂

Have a great weekend!

Random Friday


The heat is already frying my brain, so I don’t have much to say. I go out in the morning, come back for lunch time and just write.

So I’m just going to post this short comic about me and Da Muse and his stupid hats.

To see the original that prompted this, go to his Facebook page (or Twitter, or Instagram, or whatever… I’m only on Facebook, so…). Still have no idea if and when you’ll be able to read Da Strip! 🙂

Oh, and I watched ABCD, and recognized teacher Vishnu from ABCD2. Great choreographies, story okay. I haven’t seen the Hollywood equivalents such as Step Up, so I can’t compare…

Prepping for the weekend, lots of publishing stuff to do! Have a great weekend! 🙂

Random Friday


So, I’ve been reading a manuscript (I’m done, but I read on paper and need to put on the doc all my comments), a non-fiction book on bundles (yes, I’ve started working on my first bundle… I like to overwork myself from time to time, so I can complain I feel overwhelmed, LOL!) and checking my vampires stories while I try to finish the novella for May.

I also read a short ebook of m/m romance with an asexual character – we had a lot in common for many things, LOL! I will mention it in my end-of-the-year reading recommendations post, but for now that’s all. I hope to find time and relax with a drawing tomorrow, but Sunday I’m busy with non-writing stuff (will I survive? 😉 of course I will!).

I have added free PDFs on the publisher’s site – if you don’t receive my newsletter, you might want to check them out. Or you can check them out and then subscribe to the newsletter anyway. Also, the first 10 patrons on Patreon get to read an extra story! So hurry, since I will take it down as soon as I reach that quota!

Having bought a Stephan Pastis album in Boston (what, you don’t read Pearls Before Swine?! 😀 ), I have some ideas on how to print Da Strip as well, but not until the second half of the year. I have other experiments to do before that. Not to mention that I need to do some PODs this month… and it’s almost Easter already… yikes!

Anyhow, that’s all for today! Have a great weekend!

Random Friday


And I finished coloring Samantha the Witch and the Desi Vampire! The pages without lettering are now on DeviantART.

Samantha colBeta-readers might recognize the original ending of the novel even without the balloons…

The PDF with the lettering and an introduction and probably the strips that talk about that story will be a freebie for whoever subscribes to the UPB newsletter

Now I better go and letter it, though! 🙂 And then I can toy with the Star Minds Kids again. As for Da Strip, I’m starting to figure out which can be published and which better stay private… but I’m not sure how to publish it. Web-strip is probably better, or maybe I’ll give it to Patreon supporters.

Don’t panic, I haven’t opened that Patreon account yet… did I mention it’s (again) the Year of the Sloth? Everything in due time… 🙂 Have a great weekend!

 

Random Friday


Let’s make it Art Friday or something. A preview of Samantha the Witch and the Desi Vampire – pencils only and the last scene still to draw. That’s the original ending, and the first thing I wrote, but then Rajveer’s story took another turn. I thought this was fun to draw, so I’m doing this chibi-style comic about it (see even the original doodle about Samantha’s pet vampire)…

StW&DVpencil_resizeAnd now a few cloudy skies and winter suns… Roman December courtesy of Da Smartphone! Have a great weekend! 🙂

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Sunday Surprise


Apparently the author of the month has forgotten she’s on, so no author interview… unless you’d like to be featured on this blog – you or your characters, I have also a batch of questions for fictional characters if you prefer – I guess I won’t have any guests this month.

2015-09-12 09.44.52Which is kinda fine, since it’s not really a writing month for me! 🙂 So here’s what I’m doing this weekend:

Drawing S.K.Y.B.A.N.D (pencils done, the  inking is the hard part – and then the colors… and the lettering… sigh!).

Working on PODs (two done, two more to go…).

Formatting and uploading new titles (or final drafts for pre-order).

Friday morning I was at the office inking the latest strip (I don’t know when I’ll publish those and if I ever will, so don’t ask – they’re becoming too personal to be published! 😉 Maybe I’ll choose the most interesting eventually – when I’m done coloring them) and a woman came in saying “Oh, I wish I could draw like that!”

I mean, the strip. Chibi-style. I told her “I flunked illustration school because I didn’t come from an art school, but I kept drawing because I like it.”

It’s called… practice. You know, that thing musicians or other creative people do – except writers and, apparently, artists. Lots of wannabes there. “I want to write a book” but they never find the time. “I wish I could draw” but they never put pencil to paper.

I have no artistic talent. My portraits are traced from pictures. My comics are free hand and you can absolutely tell I know nothing of human anathomy – and I never draw animals (unless I can trace, so no mythical beasts, since I don’t want to steal another artist’s work) because I don’t have the will to practise.

I like drawing people, so I keep drawing people, trying different styles and never stopping. I’ll never be a professional comic artist, but I don’t care. I do it as a hobbyist because it helps me take a break from writing. But I did learn some tricks through the years.

Maybe you can’t tell, but I know when I resume drawing after a few years without doing it. I need to go back to the basis. I downloaded chibi and non-chibi human forms in different poses as reference for my comics and the strip and the vignettes…

And then I draw. And I write, but keep learning. Of course some of my older stories make me cringe, but they were the best I could produce at the time, and it’s fine. I won’t burn them just because they were crap… Nor will I throw away my old comics, although I won’t scan them and publish them either…

2015-09-12 09.45.27And with these philosophical Sunday thoughts, I shall go back to publishing and drawing… Createspace has approved the books, so I ordered the final proofs that should arrive shortly! 🙂 (BTW that cover art on those two is by Mighty Marvelous Maurizio Manzieri, not me!) Have a great Sunday! 😀

Sunday Surprise


Should have been artworks, but there’s only one new upload on DeviantART (although it’s two drawings, done last weekend). Been watching old movies and writing and reading, so… no more pencil portraits for now. So Thus I’m posting the “summary” of 2013 and how I got to doing a strip. These strips are done copy-pasting from Superdeformed Threesome Millennium, included in 15 years of Creative Barbwire – all from 2013! Enjoy.

summary

Random Friday


While I wait for some more feedback, I’m already changing things around again… taking out other points of view and researching the other characters so I can have a clearer idea of how things go. And the discarded first ending? It’s not going to vanish. A condensed version will come out as comic book – chibi-style. Which will allow me to use the whole first page for the title “Samantha the Witch and the Desi Vampire”! 🙂

I have written it (it’s about 20 pages), but I won’t start working on it until probably Rajveer the Vampire comes out! I still need to draw that last chapter of S.K.Y.B.A.N.D., color the strips and other vignettes and possibly go back to my usual pencil portraits. Maybe when it cools down! 🙂

I’ll leave you with some sketches of the alternate ending – cover and lettering attempts while I was supposed to pay attention at a DayJob course…

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